L.A. County Approves $3.5M in Payouts for Suits Over Police Shooting of Mentally Ill Man, Sex Assault by Probation Officer
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved two settlement payouts Tuesday totaling $3.5 million over incidents involving law enforcement agencies. The lawsuits were over the shooting of a mentally ill man by sheriff’s deputies and the sexual assault against a female teenager by a probation officer.
The payouts were approved at a time of rising litigation expenses for the county. In the 2016-17 fiscal year, the most recent year for which data are available, the county paid $146 million in litigation expenses, including $80 million in judgments and settlements. Such expenses have risen steadily since 2012-13.
The board approved a $2.5-million payout by the Sheriff’s Department to the minor child and parents of Johnny Martinez, a 28-year-old man believed to suffer from schizophrenia who was shot 36 times by sheriff’s deputies outside his Vermont Knolls home in 2014.
The Century Station deputies were responding to a report of an assault by Martinez’s neighbor, Jose Hernandez, who said that Martinez had stabbed him in the face with a knife.
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